Sunday, February 7, 2010

"Art + Quilt"--Beth/Lyric Project

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As a reminder to those of you that don’t normally keep up with my blog (if you do, skip to the next paragraph), I have started a project that I’m calling the Beth/Lyric Project. In the spirit of the movie “Julie/Julia,” (i.e. Julie working through Julia Child’s cookbook) I have decided to work through the exercises in Lyric Kinard’s “Art + Quilt, Design Principles and Creativity Exercises” book. My goal is to get at least one of the exercises done each week. I’ll be posting my progress on Sundays. I’d love for you to work along with me. If you decide to do that, please post and let me know how you’re doing—send pictures too! If you have trouble leaving a comment on my blog, email me at

I have completed my first exercise in the “Art + Quilt” book by Lyric Kinard. If you want to do this project with me, this is the Visual Texture Exercise in the “Art + Quilt” book. I needed something that would “push” me to think and work out of my “comfort zone.” I’m thinking the exercises in this book will definitely do that. I already found the first exercise to be challenging.

I took five fabrics (as instructed in the book) to my local Staples and made two black and white copies of each of the fabrics. I got a lot of strange stares from people there, and one woman actually came over and said, “What in the world are you doing?” Anyway…after that, I went home and cut shapes from the paper copies. Then, I made four 8” X 10” “compositions” and answered the questions from the book. I then put the compositions in the quilting journal I’m using for this project. These are the compositions.

Composition 1

Composition 2Composition 3Composition 4

Which of the compositions do you find most interesting? Please leave a comment and let me know. If you have trouble leaving a comment (as some people do), drop me an email at I’d really enjoy hearing your feedback.

The questions from the book are in bold print. My answers (at least the way I look at things) follow each question. Everyone sees things differently; there is no “right” answer. The exercises are just to make us think about texture.

What happens if you exchange a large print for a small-scale pattern?
The large print draws your eye and dominates the design.

How would the composition change with a patterned background?
Some of the designs would “get lost” in the background. The simpler designs might look more complex.

From a distance, how do the patterns read and affect each other?
The darker prints read like solids, and the design elements in the light prints “pop” out.

Which is the dominant texture and how could you make a different texture dominant?
My eye is drawn to the dark print. Adding a dark embellishment around some of the lighter fabrics might make them more dominant. I found myself wanting to add some stitching to the designs. The dominant texture varies depending on what each of the fabrics is used with. In Composition 4, I find my eye drawn by the light striped fabric and the zebra print.

I’m going to try to post the exercises every Sunday if you would like to check back. (We’ll see how that goes.) Please let me know how you are doing.


lyric said...


You can add "stitching" with an ink pen could you not?
What would happen if you scanned on of these exercises then drew on it, or added to it, or covered something up?

Jane LaFazio said...

fun exercise, Beth. That Lyric, isn't she clever? Right now, I like composition #3, but of course, it would look totally different with a background design, rather that just the white of the paper. Keep up the good work.

Pieceful Jane said...

I like composition number 4 best. I have never had a lot of interest in art quilts before, but I will admit that this exercise has me intrigued.I will be following along.

Pat Hall said...

I like #1!

Laura Lea said...

I like the first one, it radiates outward and is vibrant. I also like the balance of #3 as it has the three circles on each side equally weighted and balanced but that line down the center makes it interesting. I agree with the comment that it would look very different on a different background, imagine red!